Monday, August 13, 2007

Get your freak on

“Ever get the feeling you’ve been cheated?”

-John “Johnny Rotten” Lydon (Sex Pistol, malcontent, reality TV star [seriously])

Contrary to all appearances, this is not a Red Sox blog. While there is a picture of a Red Sox fan to your left, and the name of the blog is taken from a saying used by fans of the Red Sox, this is not a Red Sox blog. I am in fact the only writer here who adamantly follows the fortunes of the Boston Red Sox. Appearances, you see, are deceiving.

Take, for example, a baseball team falling back as far as 15 games in the standings. It would appear that this team was done. Hopeless. Wait ‘til next year, folks. But when that team is a pack of devil’s assholes known as the New York Yankees, they have a nasty habit of going on 23-8 streaks and closing the gap. At one point this season, the Yankees were in dead last place. Now they’re 4 games behind the floundering Red Sox and showing no signs on stopping, while the Red Sox can’t even win a weekend series against the cellar dwelling Baltimore Oriels.

I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, the Red Sox won the World Series just three years ago and it was in dramatic fashion that embarrassed the Yankees and the Old Towne Team has since been propelled into the sports spotlight like nothing else with books and movies and billions of band wagon fans (who have come to be symbolized by people wearing pink hats. Hence the expression “Pink Hat Nation”: nouveau fans). This is true. And, you know what? We want more.

Red Sox Nation is an insatiable beast. Yes, we enjoyed one of the greatest comebacks in the history of American sports with that 2004 ALCS win, followed by the World Series title. We stared down the Yankees in their own territory (October) and beat them. Now we want to finish the job by excommunicating them from October entirely. We don’t even want them in the playoffs. I don’t want to see Jorge Posada’s ugly little rat face, or Jeter’s silly little fist pumps, or Jason Giambi’s beady little ‘roid addled eyes. I don’t want to see old clips of Reggie Jackson and his porn star shades hitting bombs in the 1970s. I don’t want to hear Ronan Tynan singing God Bless America in the seventh inning. For once – ONCE – I want to see October come and go without a single shot of Yankee Stadium.

And this is why I’m freaking out. I never counted the Yankees out. Even when we enjoyed that 15 game lead over them a few months back, I wasn’t totally convinced we’d never heard from them again. But then, a few weeks ago, when we still had 10 games up, I gotta admit, a little voice in the back of my head told me to relax, and I almost believed it. I started to think we could keep them out of it this year. And now they’re stepping on our heels and if it gets any worse, they may keep us out!

This isn’t how it was supposed to be. Just a few weeks ago, it all looked so much better. Appearances, apparently, are deceiving.

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